Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Brady Hoke is the Bigger Person

        Today, I applaud Michigan head coach Brady Hoke for being the bigger person.  Not literally, but for a great gesture he made to a certain individual.
        You may have heard a recent story about 12-year-old Ohio State fan Grant Reed who overcame a stint with a brain tumor he named "Michigan."  Being a die-hard Michigan football fan myself, you could imagine my distaste when the story came out and the name of Michigan was equated with such a horrible thing.  "Blasphemy," I thought, but even then I was glad Michigan had lost this battle.  So you could imagine my surprise when I heard that Brady Hoke was rewarding this child who thought of my future college as a cancerous cell. Hoke gave him two tickets to this years Michigan-Ohio State game in Ann Arbor.  It was a move that nobody saw coming, and caught me completely off guard.  But after some deliberation, I realized that Hoke had made a genius move.  Giving Grant Reed these tickets was more than just saying "no hard feelings" or "congrats on getting better."  These tickets acknowledge the fact that even in the greatest rivalry in college football, it's still just a game.  There are more important things in life than football. Hoke knows that, and Grant Reed probably knows that now too.  In addition, Hoke made himself, and Michigan seem like the bigger person.  It's similar to a scenario where a bully comes up to Hoke and says, "You're ugly and fat," and Hoke responds with a, "You know what you need? A hug."   And although Grant Reed is in no way a bully, that's essentially what happened here.  Brady Hoke is redefining what it means to be "a Michigan man," and what the "Michigan difference" is all about.  Really, the decision was just a touching gesture, but it says so much more about Hoke's character and the University of Michigan.          


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